Firstly, I have to confess that this was my first visit in nearly two years (sorry Nick and Dawn!)
SCENESVILLE at THE PHOENIX, LONDON: 18th July 2003 by Gene Robertson
Firstly, I have to confess that this was my first visit in nearly two years (sorry Nick and Dawn!) and, of course, tonight made me realise just what I had been depriving myself of all this time. For those of you who don’t already know,”The Browns”, (Nick and Dawn to you) have now moved Scenesville to the Phoenix, just behind Oxford Circus, in London. The Phoenix has long been a haunt for the soul scene and the mod fraternity alike for at least 20 years, so being there was like a throwback to my youth, when I first began to frequent the place! Tonight was also a great night for meeting friends old and new, as I tagged along with old friend Shane Cox and his friend Mike, who I had met for the first time tonight. Anyway, after coffee and a liberal dose of soul records at my flat, Mike very kindly drove us on to the Phoenix, keeping the mood of the night alive with an excellent tape played in his car!! Unfortunately, we missed Dawn and Nick’s first spot of the night (but you can view all playlists below this article), so by the time we arrived, Chris Dale had just begun an excellent (as always) set.
Highlights of Chris’ spot were Betty Lou & Bobby Adams – “Dr Truelove” (TRAX) (I get so upset every time I hear this, as it reminds me of the one I bought in ’95 for £15, and promptly moved on to Mick Smith for £125. Oy Smiffy!! That must be about £375 you owe me in accrued interest by now!!); Jesse Johnson – “Left Out”; Peppermint Harris – “Wait Until It Happens To You”; Sugar & Spices – “Have Faith In Me”, to mention but many more. Shane took to the dancefloor immediately, and I never saw him again until 3am!! (only joking, really….).
Most noticeable during the night was the different type of folks in attendance; they ranged from city-type gents, young students to people just like ourselves, but the atmosphere was so alive, and really friendly. At the bar, I got chatting to a guy (whose name escapes me). It was his first soul night, but he was so overwhelmed at the good standard of music, and the overall friendliness of the night. I asked him if he’d be coming back…….and what do YOU think he said? There were a few record dealers with boxes in attendance, including Adey Potts, who made Shane cringe when he flourished Luther Ingram’s “If It’s All The Same To You Babe” at us, on offer for £375!!
Only two hours before did I refuse Shane’s offer on my worn copy!! Anyway, next up on the decks, after Chris, was Kitch. Apologies for the blaspheme in advance, but MY GOD – WHAT AN AWESOME SET!!!!!! How’s this for starters then? Admirations – “I Want To Be Free”; DC Blossoms – “Hey Boy”; Sharon McMahon – “Got To Find Another Guy” (which I remember was covered up as “Make It Last” by Florence Miller – thanks to Ion Tskalis for being one of the first to play that in ’84). Also heard was the brilliant Peewee, Shuck & Huey’s “Beside Myself”, which resulted in my first excursion to the dancefloor. Kitch also displayed the UK’s best kept secret, in the form of the Unknown Sailor cover-up – “Little Girl”, and finished a wicked set with “Keep Away” by the Appointments (the other side of “I Saw You There”, also given an airing earlier in his set).
Talk about fulfilling wishes – in a fit of excitement, I mentioned to Nick that I would “like to shake Kitch’s hand” for such an excellent spot. Before I knew it, he introduced me to the man himself for the pleasure!!!
Next up, Mr Andy Rix, who filled the dancefloor yet again by opening with Jay D. Bryant’s “I Won’t Be Coming Back” (hope that’s not true, Andy!), as well as the unissued acetates Andy always surprises us with. Personal highlights were: The Masquaders - “That’s The Same Thing”; Ronnie McNeir – Isn’t She A Pretty Girl” etc etc……. Always nice to hear the unissued acetates in the form on the Hytones (an alternative mix of “You Don’t Even Know My Name”); Keni Lewis, Irma & The Larks, The Vows – in fact, I could go on for ages, but there’s only enough you can squeeze into a review!!!
To round off the night, Dawn and Nick got together for their “Double-deckin’” spot, where they shared the decks for the final hour.
Between them, they kept the dancefloor momentum active with faves old and new such as Cecil Washington – “My Proposal”; Danny Moore – “Somebody New”; Cashmeres – “Show Stopper”; The Dolls – “The Reason Why” (NB – buy this while you can get it for £30 or less, ‘cos it’s bound to increase before long!); Carol & Gerri – “On You Heartache Looks Good” which Dawn played, and whilst she got up to dance to it, I could detect a snigger from Nick as he cued up the other side “How Can I Ever Find The Way” ready to play straight after!!!
Well, I do have to say that this must be one of the best double-siders to grace the scene. The night ended with Maxine Brown – “Oh No, Not My Baby” (so nice to hear Maxine’s excellent version being played – knocks spots off Manfred Mann or Rod Stewart’s versions any day!!), and Clyde McPhatter’s “Lonely People Can Afford To Cry”.
An excellent end to an outstanding night, then it was back in Mike’s car to my flat, until dawn finally broke at 5.30, where the three of us played more and more soul sounds accompanied by copious amounts of coffee!!! In conclusion, it must be said and known that Scenesville are certainly in the forefront of London Soul clubs.
How many other Soul nights in the South, other than the Dome, can boast a policy of ultra-rare and unissued quality soul sounds? Scenesville are, undoubtedly, in a class of their own, second to none. Long may you serve!!!!
PLAYLIST FOR THE NIGHT:
MIRACLES - Come Round Here - TAMLA TYMES - Here She Comes - PARKWAY BOBBY GARRETT - I Cant Get Away - MIRWOOD TSU TORONADOS - Only Inside - OVIDE SOUL BROS SIX - Move Girl - FINE CARL BURNETT - Jerk Baby Jerk - CARMAX BOB BRADY/CON-CHORDS - Everybodys Going To The Love-In - CHARIOT WILLIE MITCHELL - Secret Home - UK LONDON JIMMY BEAUMONT - Feel Like Im Falling In Love - BANG ZZ HILL - You Just Cheat And Lie - KENT NINA SIMONE - Break Down And Let It All Out - PHILLIPS KING SOLOMON - Somethings Wrong With Me - LE BAM TRAITS - Someday Someway - CONTACT ENTERTAINERS IV - My Garden Of Eden - DORE JACKIE WILSON - Ive Lost You - BRUNSWICK FOUR REPUTATIONS - Call On Me - MILLAGE MASQUERADERS - I Aint Gonna Stop - AGP DAWN BROWN SYL JOHNSON - Ive Got To Get Over - TMP-TING JAY WIGGINS - Tears Of A Lover - SOLID VITO/SALUTATIONS - Id Best Be Going - RED BOY SAPPHIRES - Ive Got Mine, You Better Get Yours - SWAN POINTER SISTERS - Send Him Back - ATLANTIC PEARLEAN GREY - I Dont Want To Cry - GREEN SEA DONALD JENKINS - Somebody Help Me - CORTLAND H. B. BARNUM - It Hurts Too Much To Cry - RCA VICTOR COMMANDS - Hey Its Love - BACKBEAT JACK MONTGOMERY - Dont Turn Your Back On Me - BARRACUDA FRANCES NERO - Keep On Loving Me - SOUL CREATIONS - Footsteps - ZODIAC EMANUEL LASKEY - Lucky To Be Loved By You - WILD DEUCE FREDDIE HOUSTON - If I Had Known - OLD TOWN
TRENDS - Thanks For A Little Loving - ABC PARA TAN GEERS - Let My Heart And Soul Be Free - OKEH SAM DEES - Lonely For You Baby - SSS INTL PATTI/EMBLEMS - Im Gonna Love You A Long Long Time - KAPP LA SHAWN COLLINS - What Are You Gonna Do Now - SINCERE RAY & DAVE - Wrong Wrong Wrong - MICA LONNIE RUSS - Say Girl - KERWOOD BOBBY ADAMS & BETTY LOU - Dr Truelove - TRAX PEPPERMINT HARRIS - Wait Till It Happens To You - JEWEL BETTY EVERETT - Please Love Me - ONE DERFUL JESSE JOHNSON - Left Out - OLD TOWN SUGAR & THE SPICES - Have Faith In Me - SWAN WADE FLEMONS - Jeanette - RAMSEL BOBBY REED - The Time Is Right For Love - BELL SOUL BROS INC - Pyramid - GOLDEN EYE CHARISMA BAND - Aint Nothing Like Your Love - BUDDAH WILLIE TEE - Walking Up A One Way Street - ATLANTIC
NU RONS - All Of My Life - NU RON CHARLES MINTZ - Running Back - UP LOOK APPOINTMENTS - I Saw You There - DE LITE BOBBY ANGELLE - Too Much For You - MONEY ADMIRATIONS - I Want To Be Free - PEACHES DC BLOSSOMS - Hey Boy - SHRINE JUDY STOKES - A Real Man - SOUL POWER PEEWEE, SHUCK AND HUEY - Beside Myself (You’re All I’ve Got) - FLAGG PRIMERS - How Does That Grab You - HALE HONEY & THE BEES - Dynamite Exploded - ARCTIC CHEERS - Think It Over - UNISSUED DETROIT GO GOS - Down At The Go Go - UNISSUED BERNARD WILLIAMS - Tears Tell The Whole Sad Story - VIRTUE ACETATE THE UNKNOWN SAILOR - Little Girl - COVER-UP ROBERT PORTER - My Wedding Day - UNISSUED DEVOTIONS - Do Do De Doop - NATION LOCATIONS - Mr Diamond Man - RON PAUL MELLO SOULS - We Can Make It - MELLO EDDIE REY - Ive Got Something Of Value - TRUE SOUL SERVICEMEN - You Aint Got Love - COVER-UP SHARON McMAHON - Got To Find Another Guy - KAREN REGGIE LAMONT - Cant Get Along Without You - MAMIES JAMES LATELY - Love, Friends And Money - TEMPLE DUSTY WILSON - Its Gonna Be A Tragedy - MUTT APPOINTMENTS - Keep Away - DE LITE
J. D. BRYANT - I Wont Be Coming Back - SHRINE PROPHETS - If I Had (One Gold Piece) - SHRINE DETROIT RHYTHM SECTION - I Know Something - UNISSUED VOWS - Show Girl - COVER-UP JESSE JAMES - Love Is All Right - VIRTUE ACETATE BRENDA HOLLOWAY - Crying Time - UNISSUED JOBETE LARRYS BOYS - Wanted In Three States (inst) - VIRTUE ACETATE TRANELLS - Blessed With A Love - FLO JO MARIE KNIGHT - Thats No Way To Treat A Girl (alt vers) - UNISSUED MUSICOR ADMIRATIONS - You Left Me - PEACHES HYTONES - You Dont Even Know My Name (alt vers) - UNISSUED SOUTHERN SOUND RONNIE MCNEIR - Isnt She A Pretty Girl - DE TO CAIROS - Dont Fight It - SHRINE JOHN/WIERDEST - No Time - TIE MASQUADERS - The Same Thing - SOULTOWN LEWIS SISTERS - Breakaway - JOBETE ACETATE KENI LEWIS - Not The Marrying Kind - AUDIODISC ACETATE MOSES SMITH - Try My Love - UNISSUED DIONN ARTHUR WILLIS - The Hurting Is Over - MARS LA TOUR IRMA/LARKS - You Need Love - UNISSUED CINDY SCOTT - World Of Happiness - VIRTUE ACETATE WALLIE & ROSE - Switch Around - BELTONE ACETATE KIM WESTON - Dont Let Me Down - UNISSUED JOBETE ROBERT TANNER - Sweet Memories - MEGATONE
NICK & DAWN BROWN N -
SOUL INC FEAT CECIL WASHINGTON - My Proposal - COCONUT GROOVE N - HOUSTON OUTLAWS - Aint No Telling - WESTBOUND D - TIMI YURO - Itll Never Be Over For Me - UK LIBERTY D - SPARKELS - Try Love (One More Time) - OLD TOWN N - JACKIE LEE - Wanted And Needed - COVER-UP N - ANITA ANDERSON - Little Bit Longer - CONTACT D - DOLLS - The Reason Why - TOY D - TOMMY NAVARRO - I Cried My Life Away - DE JAC N - DANNY MOORE - Somebody New - ALLRITE N - SHIRLEY EDWARDS - Dream My Heart - SHRINE D - TEMPESTS - Someday - SMASH LP D - DOUG BANKS - Aint That Just Like A Woman - GUYDEN N - MIRACLES - If Your Mother Only Knew - TAMLA N - CASHMERES - Showstopper - HEM D - BARBARA McNAIR - Youre Gonna Love My Baby - MOTOWN D - CAROL & GERRI - On You Heartache Looks Good - MGM N - CAROL & GERRI - How Can I Ever Find The Way - MGM N - TOMMY YATES - Somethings Gotta Give - VERVE D - LEWIS CLARKE - I Need Your Lovin’ So Bad - TIGERTOWN D - TOMMY RIDGLEY - My Love Gets Stronger - INTERNATIONAL CITY D - MAXINE BROWN - Oh No Not My Baby - WAND N - CLYDE MC PHATTER - Lonely People Can Afford To Cry - AMY